Last week I wrote that reader David sent in a tip about a business with the corporate name of “Snowcave XD Inc.” coming to 7060 Hollister Avenue (Hollister Village Plaza) in Goleta in the former home of Zizzo’s Coffeehouse & Brew Pub. At the time I wasn’t quite sure about what type of business this would be. Reader Cris now tells me that the web site for Westar Associates that manages Hollister Village Plaza says that the spot will be the future home of Choppa Ice Cream, which I assume is the retail name for Snowcave.

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This just in from reader David: “Hey John, I was walking by the old Zizzos bar/resturant/coffee shop in Hollister Village Plaza in Goleta and noticed a sign in the window. It says it’s leased to Snowcave XD Inc.” I have not yet been able to figure out exactly what type of business this is.



Reader Steve H. says that The Satellite Cafe is now open (for about a week now) at the Impact Hub (1117 State Street). I am told that they serve coffee and food but are primarily a wine bar. Speaking of wine bars, Steve H. also says that August Ridge Vineyards Tasting Room (in La Arcada) has also opened.

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Reader Foodie Dan says that Dave’s Dogs is opening at the old Rustys Pizza location at 149 South Turnpike Road in Goleta.

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This just in from reader Brendan:

“Yet another reshuffle at the 214 State Street location of Rebar coffee, formerly Union Ale, Yankee Noodle, etc., etc. The front space formerly occupied by Rebar now has a sign saying it is ‘Entrada Market.’ It still looks like a coffee shop/deli, though, not a market; there’s a menu showing sandwiches and breakfast items. The sign also says that ’coming soon’ is a revamped and improved Rebar.”



Reader Gary let me know that Finney’s Crafthouse & Kitchen at 982 South Westlake Boulevard in Westlake Village is planning to open a location in Santa Barbara. Owner Greg Finefrock tells me that the business plans to open in December in the newly renovated Hotel Californian at 35 State Street. Here is a description of the restaurant from their web site:

“Located in Westlake Village, California, Finney’s is a locally owned and operated restaurant and bar that brings upscale cooking to casual dining. Our local, seasonal ingredients are the soul of our culinary inspired American fare. Keeping it fresh, flavorful and at times, unexpected, are the goals we plan on continuing to hit with our first-class friendly service, menu, and bar. We offer 30 craft beers on draft, a full bar featuring hand-crafted cocktails, fine California wines, and seven HDTVs for sports viewing. We are also kid-friendly, family-friendly, and dogs are always welcome on our patio. The combination of chef-inspired food and our craft bar makes Finney’s Crafthouse & Kitchen a comfortable and inviting gastropub that attracts guests of all types – especially a local crowd who can feel right at home, whether ordering a classic favorite or trying a new culinary delight! A great passion goes into every plate that passes through our kitchen to your table, and each dish is made from scratch and contains the best local ingredients we could find. Finney’s Crafthouse & Kitchen is open for lunch & dinner, with Monday-Friday happy hour specials.”




In early June I wrote that Cody’s Cafe at 4898 Hollister Avenue in Goleta has stopped serving dinner. Reader Gillian tells me that Cody’s is now planning to bring back dinner. I called Cody’s and was told that dinner will return in a couple of weeks.



Celebrate Bastille Day at the 29th Annual French Festival, July 15th & 16th at Oak Park in Santa Barbara. One of Santa Barbara’s favorite festivals celebrates the resilient, rich and entertaining French culture. Get ready to enjoy great food, wine, mimosas, crepes, delicious pastries, music, dance and, of course, the infamous Canine Cavalcade. The Festival is fun & free for the entire family. The Santa Barbara French Festival is a community event that draws people from corners near and far. It’s a Dance Festival, a Music Festival, an Arts & Crafts Festival and, of course, a Food Festival.

This community celebration is produced by Center Stage Theater and Speaking of Stories, two no -profit organizations fostering the arts in Santa Barbara. For two days Santa Barbara celebrates its nickname “the American Riviera,” as the French Festivities transform Oak Park. Our little French village comes to life at 11:00 a.m. when the entertainment kicks off on three different stages and continues non-stop until 7:00 p.m., both days. The stages will be filled with dance and music from more than 30 different acts including performances, audience participation and instruction. The favorites return every year: Tango, Django Reinhardt tributes, and the Femme Fatales Drag Revue. You will see Can – Can and French Polynesian dancers, West African Belly dancing, French arias and every minute of entertainment is free.

West Coast Ballet Can Can dancers at the 2016 French Festival. Photo by Jonathan Hyde

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The day before our nation celebrates its 241st birthday, Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill opens in Hollister Village Plaza at 7060 Hollister Avenue in Goleta, adjacent to Smart & Final Extra. After 25 years serving guests throughout Los Angeles, Orange and Ventura counties, this will be the first Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill on the South Coast and the 28th location for the restaurant brand, which now has restaurants in Southern California, Oregon and Nevada, with more on the way in existing and new markets.

Westlake Village, Calif.-based Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill was founded in 1992 by Chief Executive Officer Steven Paperno. The Goleta location is locally owned and operated by franchisees Todd, Laura and Denise Schwarz and Scott Bayliss, will be open from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday, and from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., Thursday through Saturday.

“It’s no secret that Santa Barbara and Goleta’s growing foodie culture is built around a desire to enjoy food made with the best possible ingredients that deliver on taste and flavor,” said Todd Schwarz, franchise owner of the new Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill in Goleta. “At our new Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill in Goleta, the menu delivers on that promise while giving our guests an opportunity to eat in a way that suits their individual lifestyles. We can’t wait to open our doors and share the Sharky’s experience with the community.”

Founded in 1992, Sharky’s offers a diverse menu featuring Mexican-inspired items such as burritos, tacos, enchiladas, and nachos, as well as contemporary fare including Superfood Salads, Power Plates and an organic Roasted Veggie Bowl. The menu has been designed to appeal to varying lifestyles, accommodating vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free preferences, or for when occasions call for more indulgence. Each dish is made-to-order, using organic, non-GMO, hormone-free, and local ingredients whenever possible. Also popular are Sharky’s fresh, house-made beverages, including: red and white sangrias; seasonal lemonades such as Watermelon Basil, Pineapple Lime, and Blueberry Mint; and, infused organic teas including Hibiscus Ginger Green, Cinnamon Orange Black, and Pineapple Ginger Tropical. Sharky’s beverage menu includes a selection of wines by the glass and local craft beers on tap.

Guests can choose to dine in booths, at the dining bar with prime TV viewing, at a community table, or outside on the patio. The interior features design elements including sandblasted Douglas fir beams, Carrera marble counters, reclaimed wood, galvanized steel tables, and oversize mason jar light fixtures. Solid wood beams frame the outdoor patio that has also been designed for comfort, with a cascading water feature, overhead fans, heaters, and decorative lighting.



This just in from Jesse Gaddy, co-owner of Barbareño at 205 West Canon Perdido Street:

“Join us for our brand new California-style barbecue lunch at Barbareño! We wanted to bring our love of the Santa Maria grill and Santa Barbara’s local flavors to our community in an approachable, affordable way – and what better way than a BBQ lunch? We’ll be serving up prime tri-tip with BBQ pico de gallo, ranch-rubbed smoked chicken, pulled pork with avocado-tomatillo BBQ sauce, grilled vegetables with spiced romesco sauce, and more – all cooked over our red oak-burning grill. Our dishes are available a la carte by the quarter pound, or as sandwiches, along with plenty of sides. If you happen to be in the neighborhood, follow your nose! We’ll be serving on Thursdays and Fridays from 11:30am-2pm or until we sell out. Service is at the counter with to-go orders welcome, and seating is out on our patio – no reservations needed. See you there!”



Reader Christine showed be the agenda for the June 27th Goleta Design Review Board meeting that says approval for a sign for a new 7-Eleven will be discussed. The address is 5342 Hollister Avenue, which is the home of several businesses including the Water Store and, until recently, Mama’s Bakery.



Reader Bruce let me know that a sign for Sunny Korean Restaurant has appeared in the window at 532 State Street, the former home of Le Petite Bistro, Verde and Zia Café.



Readers Bernie and Primetime tell me that an eatery named Mundos is coming to 901 North Milpas Street, famously adorned with a cow on the roof, and the former home of Sublime, Cities Barbecue, and City Kitchen. A three-story, 50-unit apartment project is also scheduled to come to that area though I don’t know if it includes the actual building with the sacred cow. Previously I reported that Old Skool Cafe was coming here.



Chips and salsa have started flowing at La Hacienda Mexican Restaurant has reopened at 298 Pine Avenue in Goleta under new ownership. The eatery closed in February last year.



My Santa Barbara friends and I take have been taking a group photo (with the exact same pose) every 5 years since 1982 (see In 2012, when we took the last photo, CNN heard about it and did a small story on their web site and it went viral. They got 50 million hits in a week and it made newspapers all over the planet. NBC flew us all to be on the Today Show and we were asked for autographs everywhere we went while touring New York City. While at 30 Rockefeller Plaza we bumped into the US women’s gymnastic team, which has just won gold days before, and even they asked to have a pic taken with us. It was just crazy stuff.

We take our next five year photo this weekend in northern California on June 24th and CNN is covering the story again. I guess with so much politics and terrorism in the news they decided it is time for a happy story. If you happen to be watching TV or browsing the web during the next week and see a series of pictures of five guys sitting on a bench, the Restaurant Guy is the one on the right.

Update: here’s CNN story



Reader Steve H. passed word that Lily’s Flowers at 209 South Milpas Street is now selling tacos, salads, and Mexican -style juices and smoothies. I don’t think they’re related to Lily’s Tacos in any way. They also sell fruit “flower” arrangements (e.g. pineapple/strawberry spears).

Photo by reader Steve H.



I’m told that Babcock Wine is now offered for delivery with Restaurant Connection. Wine is delivered within 1-hour. Also, new on the delivery list for Restaurant Connection is Cafe Stella, Dargan’s, Brasil Arts Cafe, and The Honey B. Visit

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Solstice Saturday will be the last day of The Burger Bus here in Santa Barbara. Here is the scoop from owner Michael Gardner:

“After 8 amazing years of slinging SBs best burgers, it is time for us to begin a new chapter in our wonderful story.  We will be packing up The Bus and heading towards the beauty of Colorado.  It is with both tremendous joy and great sorrow that we end our time here as residents of this most wonderful city.  To all of our loyal BUStomers, we will miss you all so much.  To all our amazing friends who without your support we would have never pushed so hard, we thank you with all our hearts.  And to you John, great thanks for writing about us at the very beginning and showing your support for more than 8 years. It will be a huge change, but one that gives us, our family and our BUSiness such a thrill.  All you amazing Santa Barbarians, please come and support one last time before we leave.  Stop in for lunch, a wave or just a toot of your horn as you drive by. Solstice Saturday will be the last day of BUSiness.  The menu will be eclectic and with our closing, everything must go!!  Thank you Santa Barbara, we will miss you so very much. -Michael Gardner”



Goa Taco has opened at 718 State Street, the former home of Gandolfo’s New York Delicatessen, Killer B BBQ,  Kozmo’s, California Crisp, and Fat Burger. Owner and Chef Duvaldi Marneweck, a South African native, opened his first location in New York City in 2014. Within 2 years, in a tiny (230sqf) store front, Goa had made acclaimed publications such as Critics’ Pick of the New York Times and New York Magazine, and the “100 best dishes and drinks in NYC 2015” (Time Out). A second location opened in Los Angeles. Goa Taco offers paratha tacos, with on-site coal-roasted Berskhire pork belly, pickled red cabbage and chipotle mayo. A paratha is a flatbread that originated in the Indian subcontinent and is still prevalent throughout Pakistan and India. Visit



Readers Cris and Foodie Dan tell me that KFC at 5697 Calle Real in Goleta is closed for a remodel until June 26th.

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Last week I passed word from reader Steve H. that a German sandwich place is coming to 413 State Street, the former home of The Mex Authentic, Pace, Momma Donna’s, Billies, and Lettuce B. Frank.

Reader W. tells a different story:


I’m not sure where your tip comes from but the place going into 413 State is called URKEB, and I believe it is to be a Kebab place.

Perhaps the German thing came from this:
But I don’t think that has anything to do with food.
BTW if you google ABC license and an address you can get that info from the first link, much more reliable than rumors.

Your Anonymous Friend,



In 2008 we experienced the “The Cupcake Invasion.” In 2009 we had the “The Frozen Yogurt Invasion.” In 2011 “The Food Truck Invasion” rolled into the South Coast. 2014 was officially the year of “The Build-your-own Pizza Invasion.” It now appears that 2017 is the year of “The Poke Invasion” as numerous poke restaurants have popped up or are scheduled to arrive soon. Reader Don got a sandwich recently at Ike’s Love & Sandwiches of Isla Vista when he noticed that another poke place is coming our way. I’m told that the name of the restaurant will be Poki Rito and that the address is 6530 Seville Road, the former home of Shave It Nation. PokeCeviche will be opening nearby on Pardall Road in addition to a adding a location in Paseo Nuevo. HiWi Tropical Fusion of Isla Vista opened in January and includes poke on the menu. Pokemee now serves the popular dish in Hollister Village Plaza as does the new Big Eye Raw Bar in Santa Barbara Public Market and Kanaloa Seafood on Chapala.

Photo by reader Don



Reader Fay gave me an update about La Hacienda which will soon be reopening at 298 Pine Avenue in Goleta. She said the doors were open at La Hacienda in Goleta recently and so she poked in her head in to ask “how soon is coming soon?” I am told that the lady inside doing clean-up said hopefully La Hacienda will open next week.



An alarm went off in my inbox last week from nearly a dozen readers who were mourning the loss of nightly dinner service at the popular Cody’s Café at 4898 Hollister Avenue in Goleta. Dinner will be available by appointment for parties of 15 or more. While I visited the premises at about 6 p.m. to confirm the news, car after car drove up to Cody’s for dinner and I had to let each of them know the news and encouraged them to come back for breakfast and lunch, which is still available, or schedule a group meal for evening hours. One of the regulars who drove up told me that Cody’s usually has a line out the door for breakfast, and that dinner, though not packed, usually had a healthy supply of customers. There were many customers for dinner while I was there though they couldn’t get in. Readers tell me that Cody’s liquor license is being sold and that they will continue to serve beer and wine.

A sign on the front door of Cody’s Cafe reads as follows:

“Hello and thank you for dining at Cody’s! Some changes are happening here at Cody’s and we are really excited about them. Starting today, Monday June 5th, our new hours are 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. We will continue to open in the evenings for parties of 15 or more. If you are interested in scheduling a fun dinner with us please speak to the hostess or call and talk to a manager. We have some exciting new menu items as well, so please look over the menu and enjoy your meal. Thank you so much and we appreciate your patience and understanding during these changes. Thank you! Cody’s Management and Staff”



Reader Ted spotted a change of ownership sign at 5599 Hollister Avenue in Goleta, the current home of Sage & Onion which continues to be open for business as usual. I called Sage & Onion and was told that the eatery was purchased in April by Worker Bee Cafe which has a location at 973 Linden Avenue in Carpinteria. Worker Bee Cafe will retain a few menu items from Sage & Onion and complete the transformation in a few weeks.



Last week I mentioned that a drive-thru Starbucks is coming to Santa Barbara or Goleta and that the location is unknown. Reader Alex says that Starbucks is building its new drive-thru location on the vacant lot at the south-east corner of Turnpike and Calle Real between In-N-Out Burger and IHOP. This information has not been confirmed so it falls squarely under the “rumor” category for now. This is the same location where a sign was posted briefly two years ago that read: “John’s Burger and Mixed Use Development.” If this rumor is true you will someday be able to cruise Turnpike for a Double-Double and Frappuccino without ever leaving your car. Perhaps IHOP will consider adding a drive-thru so we can complete a mobile trifecta with Buttermilk Pancakes.



Readers tell me that Cody’s Cafe at 4898 Hollister Avenue in Goleta has stopped serving dinner except for parties of 15 or more, and will no longer serve liquor but will still offer beer and wine:

  • Reader Annie 1: “Cody’s cafe selling liquor license “
  • Reader Roger: “Cody’s Cafe at Turnpike & Hollister, which had been open for dinner for many years, is now serving breakfast and lunch only (hours 6 am – 3 pm) effective Monday, June 5. Their web site and Yelp listing has only partially been revised. Rumor is that they have sold their liquor license.”
  • Reader Alisa: “Hi John: after a change of ownership/management about a year ago, Cody’s Cafe at the corner of Turnpike & Hollister has discontinued serving dinner.  What’s the story there?”
  • Reader Annie 2: “I went to Cody’s in Goleta for dinner yesterday, only to find a sign on the door stating that as of Monday (June 5) they close at 3:30pm.  Any idea what’s going on?”
  • Reader Mike: “A sign on the door at Cody’s says that as of June 5, they will no longer be open for dinner.  They will open for parties of 15 or more only for dinner.  New hours are 6-3.”
  • Reader Maureen: “We planned to meet a friend for dinner at Cody’s last night, but there was a sign on the door. New hours are 6:00AM – 3:00PM. They’re only open for dinner for parties of 15 or more. So sad”


This just in from Chad Stevens, owner of Sambos at 216 West Cabrillo Boulevard:

“Hey John, We are going to have a 60 year anniversary party for the week of June 12 to June 17. Sambos will be 60 years old. I plan on rolling back the prices of pancakes to the original prices of the old menu.”



Reader Primetime heard that Bucatini, which recently closed its long time home at 436 State Street, is in early discussions to possibly open in Camino Real Marketplace in Goleta. Previously I reported that they were looking for a new home on State Street which might still be the case.



Reader Primetime says in the next year a drive-thru Starbucks will be opening somewhere in Santa Barbara or Goleta. Currently the only drive-thru full menu coffee places I know of are Zizzo’s in Goleta and McDonald’s on the Mesa and on Fairview. I believe city ordinances allow new drive-thru places to only open where there is an existing drive-thru business so that limits the possible homes for the new Starbucks.